January 10, 2012

Post-Game Breakdown: B's pull away late to beat Jets

By Jesse Connolly

Final: Boston 5, Winnipeg 3

Recap: Winnipeg got on the board first in this one when Andrew Ladd tipped in a point shot with 3:07 remaining in the first period. But the Bruins knotted things up before intermission, as Nathan Horton tallied with 40 ticks left.

The two teams continued to trade goals until the third period when Boston overcame a 3-2 deficit in abrupt fashion. Horton tied the game eight seconds into the final frame, Tyler Seguin made it 4-3 on a breakaway and Benoit Pouliot scored an insurance marker a few minutes later. The Jets did squat offensively from there on out, making things easy on Tuukka Rask as he and the B's held on for a 5-3 win.

Key Play of the Game: Pouliot's goal was not only of the hard-working variety, as the forward got his own rebound, fought off a tackling attempt by a defender and beat Ondrej Pavelec, but it was the proverbial dagger in Winnipeg's heart.

Records: Boston 27-11-1, 55 points; Winnipeg 20-17-5, 45 points

Connolly's Commendations: Unbelievable night for the first line in this one. The trio of Horton, David Krejci and Milan Lucic combined for an impressive six points. Krejci extended his point streak to nine games.

Shawn Thornton had quite the night to remember as well. The Bruins enforcer not only beat old friend Mark Stuart to a pulp, he took part in his first ever penalty shot and looked like a seasoned pro, lifting a beautiful backhander over Pavelec.

Connolly's Critiques: Kind of a rough night for Zach Hamill in his return to the lineup. No. 52 bounced down to the fourth line on a few shifts and finished with under nine minutes of TOI. He had zero shots on goal.

Notes: Thornton's strike on the penalty shot was also his first career shorthanded goal. With the win, Boston avoiding dropping two straight games. The last time they did so was Dec. 6-8 against the Jets and Panthers.

Final Thoughts: It was a shooting gallery early here at TD Garden, but the Bruins managed to keep the Jets from generating any semblance of offense in the final ten minutes of the contest, pulling away late to take care of business in the process.

Next: The Bruins will have a few days off before taking on the Jets at TD Garden on Tuesday night.